Google has officially announced New Release Radio, a station on Google Play Music that provides users with a daily selection of new songs they may like based on their listening history. The feature has actually been out in the wild for almost a month now, but originally it was positioned as an exclusive for Samsung users (though neither Google nor Samsung made an official announcement).
Now, Google is saying that it was “gathering feedback” from Samsung users before officially rolling it out to everyone — but the screenshots we saw from users on Reddit last month clearly called it a “Samsung exclusive” feature. Oddly enough, Reddit also quickly discovered a workaround for people who didn’t have Samsung phones to try the station — I got it working on my iPhone with no fuss.
It’s still not clear whether or not this was always the plan or if Google and Samsung changed course after the confusing rollout of New Release Radio in June — we’ve reached out to Google and will update this post with anything we learn.
Regardless of the back-and-forth here, we’re glad to see New Release Radio available for all Google Play Music users. It’s a smart addition to the service that matches up with some new music discovery features Spotify and Apple Music have offered for a while — and it would have been a shame if only Samsung owners could use it. The jury is still out on whether New Release Radio is as good as Discovery Weekly, but pretty much anyone using Google Play Music should enjoy giving this new station a spin.
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Long before Apple actually launched its first wearable, a trademarking spree sent the rumour mill into overdrive. Understandably so, because what else could an “iWatch” be? The Swiss clocksmiths at Swatch weren’t best pleased with this application, however, challenging the filing with the UK’s Intellectual Property Office (IPO) in 2014. The IPO recently brought an end to the dispute, siding with Swatch in its opposition of the trademark. It doesn’t really matter now, of course, with the Apple Watch already in its second generation. But, if the company ever wanted to launch an iWatch? Well, it can’t.
Swatch successfully argued that iWatch was too similar to trademarks it had already registered in the UK, namely iSwatch — a digital number released in 2013. Apple contested this on the basis it was known for the “i” prefix because of all its other iThings, so using the name iWatch was unlikely to cause confusion among consumers. The IPO thought otherwise, denying Apple the trademark. That’s true for smartwatches, anyway, with the company still allowed to use it for software, computer peripherals and components, as well as other things it wouldn’t really make sense to call iWatch.
Like patents, trademarks are a messy business, as Apple knows all too well. The company had to pay $ 60 million to secure the iPad trademark in China after a local firm laid claim to the name and briefly had tablets pulled from shelves. Apple famously battled with a Brazilian company over the iPhone trademark in the region, too, though that’s just another entry on a very long list of examples. In another iWatch dispute, a company that owns the trademark across Europe sued Apple last year, claiming that although it wasn’t stamped on any product, Apple was using the term behind the scenes to promote its smartwatch in searches and ads.
Source: Intellectual Property Office
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